This photo was taken almost 10 years ago and I just found it in my Flickr album. For the life of me, I cannot remember where I was! You see, I went to Milan, Como, Florence, Pisa, Genoa, Venice and Rome and every where I went, there were lots and lots of churches and cathedrals. I wasn’t a Catholic then and frankly, those magnificent building sort of bored me.
However, I do know that the trip changed my perspective a lot. One of them is when I observed how casual and relaxed those Italian (and even French) mothers were. They don’t work. I was told that in Italy, the women hardly have to work. They don’t have many kids because it is very expensive to bring up a kid. So, all these hot Gucci mamas just spent their afternoons lazing at the sidewalk cafes while their kids play nearby. At that time, I was still a full time working mom but I left my job after I see how classy and hip full time moms are. LOL, of course, I am probably the opposites of them.
The other thing that change my perception is how Italians love to cook. Every corner, there is a little pizzeria or ristorante or just a corner in a person’s home made into a restaurant. Sometimes, they cater to only one or two customers but still, they will lay out their tables nicely, decorate their foods and serve with full of pride.
Italian cooking is one of the simplest and yet, the tastiest. I am not sure how but it could be due to their abundant fresh supplies of herbs, meats and cheese. When I was staying in one of those heritage Firenze Hotel , the owner made the most scrumptious croissants for our breakfast. We were on shoe-string budgets hence, we stay in little homes turned into hotels. Every morning, she would use the icing sugar and make nice designs on her croissants before serving to us.
Meanwhile, Milan was the most modern and happening place. We were lucky as my hubby’s Italian colleague took us around Milan. We stayed in a better hotel in Milan as he knows the way around. So, there was no such thing as bad plumbing in that Milano Hotel . Do you know that when someone turns on a tap, the warm water that you are using will turn ice cold?
Anyway, we travelled on our own, on buses and trains across Italy. We even managed to get ourselves to Venice and ride on the water taxi there. Foods in Venice wasn’t that memorable as everything in that place is very expensive. The Venezia Hotel that we stayed in was the most expensive in all our Italian tour. One night stay costs as much as five nights here.
I hope I get to return to Italy someday as it will be more meaningful as I am a Catholic now and those historical sites will indeed be very interesting to me.